Customers React to McDonalds’ Almost Fully-Automated Restaurant

“The first mostly non-human-run McDonald’s is open for business just outside Fort Worth, Texas,” reports the Guardian. CNN calls it “an almost fully-automated restaurant,” noting there’s just one self-service kiosk (with a credit card reader) for ordering food.

McDonalds tells CNN there’s “some interaction between customers and the restaurant team” when picking up orders or drinks. But at the special “order ahead” drive-through lane, your app-ordered bag of food is instead delivered to a platform by your car’s window using a vertical conveyor belt.

CNN reports that it’s targeted at customers on the go. For example, there’s dedicated parking spaces outside for curbside pickup orders, while inside there’s a room with bags to be picked up by food-delivery couriers (who also get their own designated parking spaces outside). But for regular customers, CBS emphasizes that “ordering is done through kiosks or an app — no humans involved there, either.”
But not all customers are loving it. “Well there goes millions of jobs,” one commenter on a TikTok video said about the new restaurant.

“Oh no first we have to talk with Siri and Google [and] now we have to talk to another computer,” another one opined.

“I’m not giving my money to robots,” another commenter wrote. “Raise the minimum wage!”

Other customers had more personal concerns, expressing worries about how they could get their order fixed if it was incorrectly prepared or how to ask for extra condiments. “And if they forget an item. Who you supposed to tell, the robot? It defeats the purpose of using the drive thru if you have to go inside for it,” one consumer noted….

To be sure, not everyone had negative views about the concept. Some customers expressed optimism that the automated restaurant could improve service and their experience.

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